Valley experts urge water safety as hot weather returns

CLOVIS, Calif. (KFSN) — Many people will try to beat the heat this weekend by enjoying activities in and on the water.

Whether you’ll be cooling off at a pool, taking a boat out, or even kayaking at the lakes, officials want you to be safe in the water.

“It’s way too hot, even under the shade it’s crazy hot,” said Scott Goto as he sat and waited for his son to finish his swim class.

Mother Brittany Day was also at Bull Frog Swim School in Clovis. She said water safety is her top priority. “Our older one has just jumped in without his floaties before and that was a scary moment, so doing these lessons just takes that fear away,” Day said.

Drowning is a leading cause of death for children. According to the CDC, there are nearly 4,000 drownings a year in the US

With the major shortage of lifeguards, Bullfrog Swim School owner Darla Bartell said families need to take extra precautions.

“Drowning is silent so what we recommend is you assign a water watcher. every 15 minutes. Get a lanyard where it says water watcher, so they are responsible for that 15 minutes to watch the pool,” Bartell said.

It can also be tempting to jump into a lake or river to cool off this weekend.

Fresno County Sheriff’s Office boat unit will be out patrolling.

Sgt. Jeff Stricker said Fresno County has already seen four drownings this year.

He said they can be preventable, just know the water you’re entering. Plus, if you can’t swim – don’t go in the water.

“It may look calm, it may look nice and inviting and want to get in there. But all it takes is just looking away from the child once for half a second and all of a sudden they’re going downstream with the current and if they can’t swim, well, that creates all kinds of problems,” Sgt. Stricker said.

People will want to have a good time this weekend, so Sgt. Stricker said to make sure you’re hydrated with a lot of water. In addition, if you plan to drink, then drink responsibly.

He also recommended taking a CPR class because it could save someone’s life in the time it takes for paramedics to arrive.

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